Monday, November 8, 2010

Aubrey's Mickey Mote Review

Aubrey is ready to get started!

Today Aubrey and I received a new Disney Mickey Mote to try out and Aubrey's review is in!

The Mickey Mote is a preschooler remote control device that allows the viewer to interact with special Disney DVDs in a "Discovery" mode. The lucky preschooler's parent or caretaker gets to program the Micky Mote with the DVD remote and then you are pretty much ready to get started. Also, you are able to play the interactive Discovery mode games with your regular DVD remote arrow buttons.

The Mickey Mote seems fairly simple, and not to brag, but my kid's no dummy, so I thought she'd pick it up quickly. Aubrey is just under 3-1/2 years old and this product is being marketed to children between 2-5 years of age.

She really wanted to "do the star"
Aubrey's first reactions: 
She loved the packaging and couldn't wait to get it out of the box!
She loved the buttons and wanted to "do the star" immediately

There were a couple issues getting started: The Mickey Mote requires 2 AAA batteries which aren't included and I didn't have on hand. I had to charge up our rechargeable batteries and this made Aubrey really antsy having to wait. I popped in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Numbers Roundup DVD but apparently I programmed the buttons in the wrong sequence because I feel the directions weren't written in the best sequence. When we tried to answer the first questions on the DVD, it wasn't reading correctly, so this caused a little more lag time. (see the video)

I had to reprogram it and then we had it right. By this time Aubrey had lost a little bit of interest in answering the questions and simply wanted to watch. She also wasn't very interested in answering the questions correctly, but just wanted to click the characters or pictures she liked the best. Aubrey is a girl with strong opinions, much like her mother.

Aubrey tries it on her own
Now, before I go any further, I should mention that I have the world's CHEAPEST DVD player. It was the cheapest one you can get at Best Buy about 2 years ago, so maybe it's a little slower than others, but Aubrey seemed to be a little impatient waiting for the questions to load and then go back to the cartoon action. It was like a pause, then the question, then a pause before returning to the actual cartoon. I also felt there was a bit too much cartoon in between each question and the questions weren't worded really well for a preschooler. I had to really help Aubrey understand what they were asking. 

One other negative is that even though the remote is easy for little hands to hold, my 3 yr old didn't quite understand the concept of pointing it right at the DVD player to get it to work. Once again, my total piece of doo-doo DVD player might not respond quite as well as others' DVD players, so you might not have a problem with this, but it seemed like it didn't work very well unless it was pointed pretty directly to the player.

Now, for the good part... it's Disney and my kid loves anything Disney. As a test, I started out working with her, helping her answer the questions and prompting her to push the correct buttons and then I let her go and sat back to observe. Once she was doing it on her own, she wasn't getting the answer correct most of the time, but she still enjoyed playing with it and pretending she was doing even more than just answering the actual questions. 

Who doesn't want to see this face on their TV?
She loves Mickey's Clubhouse and really enjoyed watching the DVD, even if the Mickey Mote wasn't quite up her alley. She dances and sings along to the songs and bottom line, I think this will be a lot more fun and appropriate for her several months from now. This is the first kind of "video game" she has been introduced to at home, so I think she'll catch on with a little practice. I'm thinking four and five year olds will really get this right away and for two and three year olds, it's something you and your child will probably have to play with together and learn as you go. Nothing wrong with that.

Just in time for holiday shopping, the new Mickey Mote will be available beginning Nov 16, 2010, packaged in a DVD Play Set with either Mickey Mouse: Clubhouse Numbers Roundup or Handy Manny: Big Construction Job. It retails for around $29.99 and the other Discovery Mode enhanced DVDs are already on the market and ready to use with your new Mickey Mote, including Handy Manny's Motocycle AdventureMickey Mouse Clubhouse Road RallyLittle Einstein's Fire Truck Rocket's Blast Off and six additional titles.

I hope you found this review helpful and happy Mickey Moting everyone! Woohoo!

I was not compensated for this review and I did receive the product to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed on this blog are completely my own. So there.

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